By Judy Thorburn This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - Las Vegas Round The Clock

Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - The Flick Chicks
Director of Communications - Nevada Film Alliance

Famed New York Family Style Italian Restaurant Carmine's Opens inside Caesars Forum Shops

The first West Coast location of Carmines celebrated its Grand Opening at the Forum Shops inside Caesars Palace on Tuesday, July 16 and began with a ceremonial “pasta” cutting before the venue opened its doors to the public.

Carmine's flagship, original location opened August 14, 1990 at 2450 Broadway on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.  And, just like the  famed New York family style eatery, the latest edition (occupying the former space of the Planet Hollywood restaurant) has a friendly and inviting atmosphere and offers family style portions of traditional Italian dishes that are meant to feed four to six people, in other words to be shared with family and friends.   Reasonably priced, the menu includes generous platters of homestyle antipasto, pasta, decadent seafood or meat entrees, and of course, homemade dessert.  Not to be excluded, vegetarians will be happy to know that there are several scrumptious options also on the menu for their liking.

On opening day, I along with several of my media colleagues had the pleasure of trying several of the delicious items on the menu, to the delight of our hungry palate. The dinner, or rather feast, started off with some appetizers: fried zucchini, which is thinly sliced and breaded and served in a heaping mound, and the cold antipasto platter made with olives, tapenade, cheese, meats, and comes with an assortment of breads and a white bean dip. Entrees included meatballs and spaghetti;  gluten free pasta pomodoro covered in marinara sauce; slices of broiled porterhouse steak, contadina style with peppers, onions potatoes and sausage; salmon oreganata, all complemented with a choice of fine white or red Italian wine from their wine list that features a strong selection of varieties from Italy and the rest of the world.

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Fried Zuccini
Photo courtesy of Carmine's

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Spaghetti and Meatballs, Pasta Pomadoro and Slices of broiled porterhouse steak, contadina style with peppers, onions potatoes and sausage
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Salmon Oreganata
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

To top off the meal were two sinfully mouthwatering desserts: the “sexiest ever”  taramisu, and Carmine's famous Titanic sundae: a towering flourless chocolate tort made with five scoops of ice cream (2 vanilla and 3 chocolate) strawberries, bananas, roasted pineapple, hazelnuts and housemade whip cream.

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Titanic sundae and Tiramisu
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

The 25,000, two-story restaurant seats 750 people and offers several private dining rooms for family or group celebrations including parties, wedding receptions and rehearsal dinners. There is also a bar area, which serves a full menu as well as a smaller one.

Of course, the newest Carmine's has a reputation to live up and  that shouldn't be a problem. With its warm environment, huge and delicious servings, the family style Italian restaurant promises a very “full” and satisfying experience for both locals and visitors alike.

Carmine's inside the Forum Shops at Caesars is open for business Sunday - Thursday, 11:30 a.m. - 11 p.m.; Friday - Saturday, 11:30 a.m. - midnight.  Reservations are  suggested.

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From left to right at the pasta cutting ceremony at the Grand Opening: Michael Ingino, Carmine’s Las Vegas executive chef; Glenn Rolnick, corporate executive chef; Jeffrey Bank, CEO; Neal Corman, corporate executive chef; Ericka Aviles, business marketing manager for the LVCVA host committee and Larry Brown, Clark County Commissioner.
Photo courtesy of Carmine's

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Photo courtesy of Carmine's

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Jeffrey Bank, Carmine's CEO
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Additional recent and upcoming “happenings” in and around Las Vegas include:

MCFADDEN’S RESTAURANT AND SALOON at Town Square Las Vegas celebrated its return to Sin City with a huge grand opening bash on Thursday, July 18. Check out Dianne Davis' column in this issue of LVRTC to read more about the event.

In response to its overwhelming popularity, VÉRONIC VOICES starring vocal phenomenon Véronic DiCaire, has extended her run. She will continue to headline her hit show in the Jubilee! Theater inside Bally’s Las Vegas through Dec. 21, 2013.

Las Vegas based rockers 'FORGOTTEN DOOR'  bring their signature “New Classic Rock” Sound to the Clarion Hotel & Casino's Wolf Theater for a six month weekend residency.  Previews are July 26-28, August 2-4, and August 9-11; Official opening night is on Friday, August 16. Doors open at 6:45 p.m. for the 7 p.m. shows on Fridays and Saturdays; on Sundays, the show begins at 9 p.m. Tickets are $47.97 General Admission, $57.97 VIP, and booths for four are available for $195.

LAS VEGAS ROCKS VARIETY SHOW” hosted by entertainer Tony Sacca will be dark on Friday, July 26.  The show on Aug. 2 will feature Sacca and guests: comedian Louie Anderson, Rob Garrett as Neil Diamond, other acts TBA and the Michael T Band performing at the 2 p.m. taping before a live audience in Marilyn’s at the Eastside Cannery on Boulder Highway. The show is FREE for the audience. The hour-long weekly show will air the following day locally at 3 p.m. on Vegas TV Cable 14 as well as regionally including on KLBC TV Cable 2 airing in Laughlin, Bullhead and Kingman.

The COLLEGE OF SOUTHERN NEVADA FINE ARTS GALLERY  will present “END OF THE RAINBOW”, A SOLO EXHBIT BY LOCAL ARTIST AND CSN PART TIME INSTRUCTOR MICHAEL OGILVIE, beginning Friday, July 26 through Friday, Sept. 20.The CSN Artspace Gallery is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are from 8 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. The Artspace Gallery is located at the half circle drive, upstairs above the Cheyenne campus main entrance, 3200 E. Cheyenne Ave., one mile east of I-15 North.

The Southern California pop-punk trio EVE 6 will perform a FREE concert on Saturday, July 27 at 9 p.m. at the 1st Street Stage as pat of the Here’s to the Night at Fremont Street Experience Rock of Vegas summer concert series.

Friday, August 2 and Saturday, August 3, The Rudy Foundation in association with The Las Vegas Young Entertainers present HELEN JOY'S BROADWAY VIGNETTES, an annual production, which brings together some of Las Vegas’ most talented young performers.  Broadway Vignettes is an animated show filled with solo and ensemble performances of songs from Broadway favorites like Wicked, Seussical, South Pacific, Matilda the Musical, and Les Miserables. Showtime is  7p.m. both nights.  Tickets are $12 per person.  This year, all proceeds will support the Rudy Foundation Scholarship Fund, a program designed to provide support, awareness, and funding to embolden youth performance programs while bolstering community involvement.

Electronic rock music band, BREATHE CAROLINA, will perform at The ACT Nightclub in The Grand Canal Shopped at The Venetian | The Palazzo on Saturday, August 3.

 In celebration of what would have been Andy Warhol’s 85th birthday (August 6), BELLAGIO GALLERY OF FINE ART  is commemorating the iconic artist’s life with a special $8.50 admission price to its current exhibition “WARHOL OUT WEST” from 10 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. August 6 and 5 p.m. - 7:30 p.m., nightly, August 7 – 12. All patrons visiting the Gallery will receive a complimentary BGFA souvenir with admission throughout the week, while supplies last.  Guests can also celebrate Warhol’s birthday during Art & Wine: A Perfect Pairing on August 14, as Bellagio’s executive pastry team creates delectable cupcakes in honor of the Pop Art pioneer.

The WORLD HIP HOP DANCE CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS return to the Orleans Arena Sunday, August 11 – 7 p.m. In the largest gathering of nations in the history of the event, top dance and MegaCrews from around the world will vie for medals as they perform action-packed routines for a panel of international judges. World Champions from Japan and New Zealand will return to defend their titles.  Reserved seating is priced at $25, $39.50 and $59.50.

TROPICANA  HEADLINER, CELEBRITY MAGICIAN MURRAY,  PRESENTS BEGGIN' FOR LIFE! CHARITY BENEFIT SHOW on Wednesday, August 14 at 4 p.m. with a red carpet at 3 p.m. All profits from the show will go to Friends for Life Humane Society, a privately funded shelter that rescues dogs from kill shelters and saves their lives. For this special show, there will be 5 or more variety acts including Jennifer Lynn from Frankie Moreno's band playing violin;  Nino Frediani - juggler who performed 20 years at the Flamingo and who is legally blind; Paul Shortino from Rock Vault, and a few others that have yet to be confirmed. Murray and his wife Chloe decided to become spokes persons for this charity after they adopted a puppy from the Society and learned that they are privately funded and NEVER had anyone represent them or give them any notoriety. The public (especially you animal lovers) is invited to buy tickets for this great afternoon show while at the same time helping to support a very worthy cause.  For tickets, visit the Tropicana Box Office or call (702) 739-2411. For more information about Friends for Life Humane Society go on line to:

DIAMOND RIO, six-time award-winning “Vocal Group of the Year” and multi-platinum country music super group, will perform at the Henderson Pavilion (200 S. Green Valley Pkwy.) for the first time, 8 p.m. on Friday, September 13. Tickets are $15 and go on-sale, Tuesday, July 23 at 10 a.m.

Upcoming acts that are scheduled to perform at the PEARL THEATRE inside the Palms Casino Resort are:
July 27 – The Wayans Brothers; Tickets start at $40
August 2 – Gipsy Kings; Tickets start at $49
August 9 – Toni Braxton; Tickets start at $53
August 23 – Steely Dan; Tickets start at $80
August 28 & 29 – Journey; Tickets start at $83

THE ANNUAL ONE DRUNK PUPPY WINE TASTING EVENT to benefit five local animal rescues will take place Saturday, August 17  from 6 – 9 p.m at Silverton Casino.  A portion of the proceeds from the event will benefit five animal rescues offering rehabilitation, adoption services and more right here in Southern Nevada. Party-goers will enjoy complimentary appetizers, entertainment and a wide selection of international wines, featuring luscious varietals and many opportunities to sample new flavors from Southern Wine & Spirits. A silent auction offering unique packages to support all the organizations will be available. Enjoy the bold flavors while supporting a great cause inside Veil Pavilion.  Admission Cost: $35 in advance and $45 day of.
 In the continuing celebration of its 10th anniversary season Las Vegas’ original day club,  REHAB AT HARD ROCK HOTEL & CASINO will present a day of high energy DJ sets by rock legend TOMMY LEE AND DJ JIMMY LEE AND DJ AERO as well as NICK THAYER,  on Sunday, Aug. 25.

Award-winning actress, comedian and producer WHOOPI GOLDBERG returns to Treasure Island August 30 at 9 p.m. Tickets are available starting at $69.95, plus tax and handling fees, SOUTHERN HILLS HOSPITAL has received the 2013 Nevada Hospital Engagement Bright Spot in the Silver State Award for demonstrating excellence in patient safety. Along with high quality patient care and excellence in patient safety, Southern Hills received the award for its culture and leadership in being the first hospital in Nevada to create a Patient and Family Advisory Committee. Under the leadership of CEO Kimball Anderson, the hospital established a group of past patients and their family members who provide ongoing feedback and receive insight in order to improve healthcare services in southwest Las Vegas.

Celebrity Sightings:

Wednesday, July 17...

Phil Lewis, lead vocalist for rock group L.A. Guns, was spotted enjoying Blue Man Group’s newest production at Monte Carlo Resort and Casino.

Thursday, July 18...

“Original Pop Princess,” singer-songwriter Debbie Gibson, attended Million Dollar Quartet at Harrah’s Las Vegas with her mother Diane Gibson, then stayed after the performance to meet with cast.

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Photo Courtesy of MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET Las Vegas

Friday, July 19...

New York Giants cornerback Prince Amukamara proposed to girlfriend Pilar Davis during the Jabbawockeez show “PRiSM” at Luxor Hotel and Casino. A Jabbawockeez fan and dance lover, Amukamara popped the question in style when he sneakily joined the dance crew onstage for a performance in costume. Davis was pulled onstage as part of the act, and after the routine Amukamara dropped to one knee and took off his mask to reveal himself to Davis for his heartwarming proposal – she said yes. This was the first proposal ever integrated into a Jabbawockeez show.

 Jabbawockeez Prince Pilar
Photo courtesy of Jabbawockeez

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Photo courtesy of Jabbawockeez

ESPN Sports Business Reporter Darren Rovell was spotted enjoying dinner at Jaleo inside The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.

Former Philadelphia Eagle and co-star of E! Network's "Kendra," Hank Baskett, stopped by Rockhouse, located at Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian | The Palazzo, for a late lunch with friends.

Hank Baskett Poses at Rockhouse
Hank Baskett
Photo courtesy of Rockhouse

WE tv’s “Kendra on Top” star Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett kicked-off the second annual World's Largest Bachelorette Party, a weekend long affair giving brides-to-be and their girlfriends the ultimate pre-wedding bash, at TAO Beach. Kendra and friends made their way to a VIP cabana where fellow hostess for the weekend, Gretchen Christine Rossi of “The Real Housewives of Orange County” took over the neighboring cabana. The two ladies posed for photos before dressing up in boas with the Chippendales dancers. Gretchen's fiancé, Slade Smiley stepped in as an honorary member of the Chippendale’s crew as did Kendra's husband, former NFL wide receiver Hank Baskett.

Later that evening, The group, including Kendra, Hank, her mother, brother and close friends, continued their day at TAO.
NBA star James Harden was also spotted at TAO Nightclub.

Gretchen Rossi and Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett TAO Beach
Gretchen Rossi and Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett
Photo credit: Brenton Ho, Powers Imagery

Hank and Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett TAO
Hank Baskett and Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett
Photo credit: Karl Larson, Powers Imagery

Saturday, July 20...

“Real Housewives of Orange County” star Gretchen Christine Rossi hosted the second day of the World's Largest Bachelorette Party. at TAO Beach. The newly engaged Rossi was joined by her fiancé Slade Smiley.

Later that evening, Gretchen co-hosted a private reception for the bachelorettes at LAVO Nightclub alongside Chippendale dancer and former "Amazing Race" contestant Jaymes Vaughan who emceed the event.  Afterward, Gretchen, Slade and a small group of friends enjoyed dinner at TAO Asian Bistro then partied at a VIP table at TAO Nightclub.

Mark Goodman, an original MTV VJ, was also spotted enjoying dinner at TAO Asian Bistro with friends.

Tuesday morning, July 23...

The Quad's headliners,, performed in front of Bally's to welcome Dartmouth College's Big Green Bus. The converted biodiesel Greyhound bus operated by 13 students will continue its travels across 24 states covering 12,000 miles as they educate individuals on environmentally friendly practices in their community and how they can implement them at home.Guitarist Matt Bowman and Recycled Percussion’s founder, Justin Spencer, addressed the crowd about the group’s junkyard adventures to collect the perfect items that become instruments in their show. Meanwhile, drummer Ryan Vezina joined Spencer on their famous trash can drums while DJ Jason Davies wowed the crowd with his flips and break dancing moves.

Recycled Percussions Matt Bowman on bike
Photo credit: Gabe Ginsberg/Vegas Kool

At night,  Recycled Percussion, celebrated the Grand Opening of the newest Las Vegas location of Smashburger by serving as “celebrity smashers.”They enjoyed learning about the special Smashburger smashing technique and shared a delicious meal before heading off for their performance at The Quad.

Excited for Smashburger
Photo credit: Tom Donoghue

Wednesday night, July 25...

Twin sisters Tia and Tamera Mowry took in Frank Marino and the rest of the Divas Las Vegas cast at The Quad Resort & Casino. The ladies were in town filming for their Style Network reality show, Tia & Tamera.

 Tia and Tamera Mowry with Las Vegas Headliner Frank Marino
Tia and Tamera Mowry with Frank Marino

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